Friday, April 25, 2008

Heavy Metals threatening the Murray

The return of flow in the first instance could come from putting every irrigation channel into pipes. The evaporation and seepage which is assisting in leeching these chemicals would be reduced.
Unlike the sting pulled by Victoria where a saving of 800 billion litres is being touted, not one litre is programmed back to the River flow.I now see that water trading licences are being set up in Melbourne. The sting continues.
Having said that the open channels that exist across the entire basin represent billions of litres wasted by poor management. One suspects that if no increase in allocation and a continued buyback occurs there maybe sufficient water.
I am yet to here of any engineering works such as this being programmed in NSW or Queensland.
The other thing that is annoying when according to a report done by the University of New South Wales there are over 2000 kms of illegal dams and levee's diverting flow from the River, whom is going to take responsibility for removing these environmentally damaging structures. Peter Garret's Office and Penny Wong's Office will not even respond to letters on this matter let alone the NSW Premier's Office.
I fear our politicians who can make a difference are hiding their head in the Sand or secretly doing Rain dances in the hope we get a flood.John Venus has pointed out his concerns on this matter - follow this link or see his comments in the shared articles listing over on the right hand side of this blog.
There are also many schemes that have suggested pumping water from the Northern Rivers (only in times of flood mitigation) that could well support flows throughout the basin. The programs I have been privy to also included generating Green Power as means of making the whole scheme instantly viable. Still we watch the flood warnings right now and gigalitres flowing uselessly, causing massive damage, out to sea.
The problem is fixable and we do not need to see stupidity that almost killed the Snowy River repeated. The water is available, the gumption to fix it severely lacking. For God's sake act and act decisively.
The question of crop sustainability along the River Basin needs to be addressed but lets look at where the additional water maybe sourced sensibly.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Karlene Maywald attends Conferences on Drought Strategies

Minister Karlene Maywald is attending Public Conferences today on Drought Strategy. Firstly let me say I am pleased to see the Community start to get involved and really glad that the Minister is going along. A bit of a shame that Penny Wong did not go along as well.

Anyway lets see the outcome, I will look forward to hopefully reading some outcomes soon.

Over-allocation needs action: Rann

The article underneath the link in this heading is I am afraid all too typical of what is going on in the whole Murray Darling Basin discussion.

Yet another fine rhetorical statement accompanied by another Happy Snap.

Mike do something, hey why wouldn't you lead a street march down to Penny's Office with a few banners demanding action. Dear Mike do something!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Communities Die - while Kevin,Penny and Mike Fiddle

So the good Karlene gets handed the bitter pill of advising that a third of the Irrigation Communities could die if the dire situation does not change.

So after decades of inaction what are we still seeing, INACTION.

I would like to have one of our expert economists tell me exactly what the loss to GDP is going to be with the loss of Riverland and Lower Murray Production. What is it going to cost Australia and the state of South Australia. I fear the number might put yet another shiver into the future of the Australian Economy.

When are we actually going to see some action on returning wasted water to the River. Just buying water alone sure is not going to fix the problem - there has to be serious inroads into better water management NOW.

So put down the Violin and do something.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Water Down Under 2008

Today sees the beginning of the "Water Down Under 2008" conference. The major sponsors are The South Australian Government and SA Water. The Bureau of Meteorology and the National Water Commission are also major contributors. I really hope that this talk fest can actually assist in generating some positive steps to confronting the issues for the driest State in what is arguably the driest continent.

It is very important that these events are conducted, but what is very frustrating is the lengthy periods of inactivity in actually doing something.

Whilst this blog is directed at the Murray Darling Basin the issues are indeed much greater when taking a holistic perspective on the growth of Australia and the ready availability of the essential resource of water.

The obvious place to look particularly for South Australia is to remove our reliance on the River and protect our Primary Producers who depend on the River for their livelihood.

Brisbane must address it's domestic water issues as must most Capital Cities. Equally there are many country communities that are consistently walking a fine line on having sufficient water.

Yes we need answers, but most importantly we need action. Unfortunately there are decades of inaction that bring this to crisis point today.

Good luck with the conference - I look forward to hearing and seeing some positive outcomes.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Can legal cannabis crops help save the Murray? But what about the open Channels?

The NSW Government (click the heading for the link) has put up a wonderful idea. Hemp is a much underestimated crop and provides so many bi products that are valuable to our community lets get on with it. Fibre,oil and many other opportunities exist in growing hemp.It will need fabric industries and a whole range of support from big business to make it viable but hey lets actually get behind this idea.

It will save water!

On a less positive note however, this blog has been very critical of inaction in Victoria. I would really like to know when is the NSW Government going to bite the bullet and replace all of their open irrigation channels with piped water. The savings from seepage and evaporation alone will contribute an enormous amount of water saving for the Murray Darling Basin. Please do it now and unlike the Victorians actually return the water to the River system.

The question I still ask when the hell are we going to stop talking and start doing SOMETHING!!!!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

COAG Conned - "The Sting"

It is fair to say that I think Mr Brumby has pulled the biggest con job of all time. As I have written previously the Murray Valley Basin modernization programme to be initiated by the Victorian Government is slated as saving 800 Billion Litres of water at a cost of $1billion. But of course that is 800 billion litres of water that is currently in the Victorian Quota. Therefore the 800 Billion Litres will not be returned to the River and is not accessible because the MOU says that Victoria can keep taking its quota until 2019. Will there be a Murray/Darling left by then?

Well done Mr Brumby you have scammed the system so well that not even your own Farmers Federation got the picture and were busily protesting your stupidity - or was this just a set up to pull off the whole sting.

Everyone is running around back slapping each other but secretly they still have not caught on that Victoria has just been paid $1billion to keep back 800 billion litres for their own use.

I will be interested to see what our pollies think when they work out how good a job Victoria has done on you all. Paul Newman and Robert Redford would be proud. Marvin Hamlisch/Scott Joplin a little of "The Entertainer" please.

Tim Norton an adviser for Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert has written a very good article over at the Blog Larvatus Prodeo. It is in my shared items here or follow this LINK.